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Wednesday, March 3, 2004

Aspyr February Newsletter Newsbits
9:49 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

As is customary at this time of the month, Aspyr Media released the February issue of the company's popular newsletter. In addition to news that The Sims: Makin' Magic expansion pack for The Sims has begun shipping, the newsletter provides updates on some of their upcoming games.

First up is news that Medal of Honor: Breakthrough, the second expansion pack to the WW II first person shooter, Medal of Honor, is in the final candidate stage of development. This is the final testing phase before the game is declared "gold" and is sent to manufacturing.

Aspyr also reveals that Space Colony is in alpha, while Call of Duty and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the Ring are both in beta.

The newsletter also includes some interesting information regarding their internal development team, which has now grown to five programmers:

Aspyr Studios, our internal development group, has now grown to five programmers! They are hard at work a several exciting new Mac games for 2004. Recently all of Aspyr's programmers participated in a "Games Summit" sponsored by Apple Computer, where they were able to work directly with Apple engineers on optimizations for the G5 and Panther. They also had a chance to work with new technologies and give Apple feedback on ways to make the Mac an even better gaming platform.

Better Gameplay
Upgrading your Mac to use the latest version of OS X, Panther, can help your favorite games run even better. Especially 3D games that need to run as fast as possible. Panther includes several updates to OpenGL, the interface games use to talk to the Mac's video card, that make it faster and more stable. Several of Aspyr's upcoming games in 2004 are going to run best on Panther, so upgrading soon will not only make your existing games run better but ensure you are ready to play this year's upcoming hits.

Adding RAM
Another big improvement for gameplay on your Mac can ! come from adding more RAM. If you only have 256MB of RAM, your Mac may not be able to fit all of a game's graphics and levels in memory, and have to swap them out to the harddrive. This might cause your game to pause unexpectedly or hiccup as it grabs data from the hard drive when it needs it. Upgrading to 512MB or even 1GB of RAM will give you smoother gameplay.

Aspyr recently released several new patches for games like SimCity 4, NASCAR 2003, and Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness. If you have had any problems with your Aspyr games, make sure and check the support pages on to see if a patch is available for your game.

The February newsletter also includes a cool mini-interview with Karen Halloran, a former IMG writer, who now works in the technical support department at Aspyr. To check out the entire newsletter, follow the link below.

Aspyr Media
Aspyr February Newsletter

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World of Warcraft Transportation Movie
11:33 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Blizzard has posted an impressive-looking QuickTime movie that features the advanced flying transportation network found in World of Warcraf. In the game, players can unlock flying routes and then buy tickets to ride flying mounts over long distances.

The two-minute movie shows off a Gryphon ride from Stormwind to Ironforge. The download is 25 MB and is available for download by following the link below.

World of Warcraft is currently in development for both Mac and PC and is scheduled to be released sometime in 2004.

Blizzard Entertainment
World of Warcraft
World of Warcraft Movies
Buy World of Warcraft

iPod Adventure Game Released
11:02 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

XO Play has released its second "iPod Story Game" entitled Herbert's Big Adventure. Using the iPod's Notes section, you read the adventure and then are asked to choose what to do next by selecting from options at the bottom of the page.

Here's some background on the game:

You take the role of Herbert, a heart breaker, lady lover- funny guy who has all the right moves with all the right smooth talk. You will venture out into the city and seek that one true love to give your heart to. You will search high and low until you find her.
Instructions on how to install the game on your iPod and how to play the game can be found on the XO Play website.

XO Play

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Update on F/A-18 Operation Iraqi Freedom
10:15 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

IMG this morning spoke with GraphSim's Jeff Morgan to get an update on the long-awaited Mac version of F/A-18 Operation Iraqi Freedom. According to Morgan, the game is well into beta testing and is "looking great". When asked about a ship date, Morgan said that they hope to ship the game in mid-April.

Be sure to keep an eye on IMG as we'll be posting more on F/A-18 Operation Iraqi Freedom shortly.

F/A-18 Operation Iraqi Freedom
Buy F/A-18 Operation Iraqi Freedom

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id Software Talks Doom 3
9:49 AM | Johan HansÚn | Comment on this story

With the release date set to April, the anticipation for id Software's upcoming first person shooter Doom 3 intensifies. The online magazine GamePro has posted an interview with id's CEO Todd Hollenshead, Tim Willits, Doom 3 Lead Designer and Marty Stratton, Director of Business Development, speaking on how Doom 3 came into being.

From the interview:

GamePro: When did Doom 3 really start development?

Marty Stratton: Right after we finished up Team Arena. John had been working on the technology before that, and Team Arena came out in the fall of 2000. Tim had been doing a lot of work on it prior to that, but I would say from an artist and designer perspective, people transitioned after that. So basically for about three years, it's been a company-wide effort.

The interview contains a lot for the people interested in the history of Doom 3. To find the interview, you can click on the link provided below.

Doom 3 has been confirmed for Mac, but who will be publishing it is still unknown. Quake III Gold edition was shipped as a hybrid disc, so there's a possibility that Activision may also publish the Mac version. Only time will tell.

id Software
GamePro: An Interview with id
Buy DOOM 3

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Law & Order Update Released
9:49 AM | Tuncer Deniz | Comment on this story

Aspyr today released a small patch to their crime-solving mystery game, Law & Order: Dead on the Money. The update fixes a stability problem under Mac OS X 10.3 Panther.

Here's what's been fixed:

This update fixes stability issues with Law and Order under Java 1.4.2.

IMPORTANT: This update requires Mac OS X 10.3 or later, Java 1.4.2, and Java3D. If you are not running OS X 10.3 or later, do not install this update.

To download the update, head over to

Aspyr Media
Law & Order: Dead on the Money
MGF: Law & Order 1.0.1
Buy Law & Order: Dead on the Money

Mac Games News for Tuesday, March 2, 2004

OWC Announces 1.5 Mercury Extreme G4 Processor Upgrade9:59 AM
Student Scholarships Available For WWDC9:52 AM
IMG Previews Nanosaur 2: Hatchling8:52 AM
Blizzard Banking on World of Warcraft8:07 AM
Ubisoft Acquires Wolfpack8:07 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, March 2, 2004 on one page

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Monday, March 1, 2004
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